GRN1 Cancellation Announcement

Due to a lack of interest and funding, Obelisk has had to cancel the GRN1 project. All who purchased the GRN1 directly from Obelisk will be receiving a full refund for their purchase. Refunds will be provided in the form of BTC equal to the USD value of the amount paid at the time of purchase. If credit was used, the credit will be added to the amount refunded. If coupons were used, the coupons will be returned as coupons.

Several factors proved to be significant barriers to the GRN1 project. The biggest challenges were the split block reward and algorithm phase-out. When the phase-out of Cuckatoo31 was announced, Obelisk had to decide whether to abandon the current design and switch to building a Cuckatoo32 capable miner, which would result in shipping delays, increased manufacturing cost, and reduced competitiveness, or to continue pursuing Cuckatoo31 and gamble that the Grin price would be high enough to justify such a short lived miner.

Obelisk chose to believe in the price of Grin and move forward with a more aggressive and more competitive piece of hardware. This ended up being the wrong choice, and the Grin price fell to below $2 right at the critical point for Obelisk (May 2019).

Though that was ultimately a strategic error from Obelisk, the error was the result of a highly complex set of tradeoffs presented by the Grin team in their choice of PoW algorithm:

Option 1: GPUs. Lowest financial risk, because the GPUs can always be pointed at another cryptocurrency later in time.
Option 2: Flexible ASICs. Assuming no algorithm-specific ASICs come out, this option has the most profit. The Grin devs had explicitly stated that they did not want ASICs targeting the Cuckaroo algorithm, so choosing this option is a political risk.
Option 3: ASICs that can hit both Cuckatoo31 and Cuckatoo32. This option made the most sense if no other manufacturer made a Cuckatoo31 exclusive ASIC.
Option 4: ASICs that can hit exclusively Cuckatoo31. This option had the lowest total revenue, but ensured that the hardware would be competitive regardless of the decisions of other manufacturers.

If the goal of the Grin devs was a competitive landscape that could support multiple manufacturers, there should have been only one option. Since multiple manufacturers chose different options, it was unclear which products would be successful, and as a result none of the manufacturers could easily move forward.

Another significant barrier was the overall complexity of building a Cuckatoo31 solver. Though Cuckatoo31 was often advertised as a very simple algorithm, an optimal solver is anything but. The GRN1 chip design had thousands of hashing cores and memory banks, with a routing network that included two different types of sorting and multiple novel techniques for maintaining backpressure on our hashing cores and memory banks. In addition to this, the chip contains two different hashing functions (siphash and blake2b) as well as an entire on-die custom cycle finder.

Even with all of this complexity, substantial optimizations were left on the table. For example, as you perform edge trimming, you can begin to apply compression to the increasingly sparse graph, which improves memory usage and reduces the total memory requirements of the chip. As another example, the GRN1 had no analog optimizations in it at all. Simply by switching to an analog construction we could have significantly reduced the size, cost, and energy consumption of the chip while also improving the speed. We believe that successive generations of the GRN1 would have likely increased substantially in sophistication, and also greatly reduced the capability of competition to effectively enter the market.

We had hoped to be significant contributors to the Grin ecosystem, both in terms of providing hardware and network security, and also in terms of providing funding to the development team, however a number of factors both inside and outside of our control have ultimately led to the cancellation of the project.

We will be sending an email to GRN1 customers detailing how to receive your full refunds. While we are saddened to cancel the project, we are excited to bring future products to market. Please email us at with any questions or concerns.


is this true? where did you get this? i pre-ordered it though another site please dont tell me this

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At least the news is also - in a bit shorter version - on medium.

Also the user is known to communicate for Obelisk here in this form. So I think its true.


The original idea was to start with Cuckatoo32 and keep going up to make sure single-die chip would not be made.

so the default option was C32 from Sept 2018

Then it was dropped to C31 Nov’18 so it must have been at this point when Obelisk committed to gamble with single-die C31 design so not sure about your timeline there.


In my opinion, Obelisk planned single-die chip ASIC before the anti-single-chip (or ASIC in general) measures were taken. David Vorick tried to push the design back to single-chip realm many times on gitter as this was likely the only option for a smaller company. And when C32+ was downgraded to C31+, there was a chance the design could still be used. This is where Obelisk had to either drop the Cuckoo SRAM design and start from zero or risk it with a massive monolithic die and push their way to C32 die.

So Obelisk possibly gambled twice: first when developing ASIC for Cuckoo29 that would have creamed all CPU/GPU miners with single-chip considered impossible by Grin devs at the time. And then when they saw a spark of hope with C32 → C31 change. Not sure I like the implied negativity towards Grin PoW design from Obelisk.


Hi GRINers,

@Taek when was this announced " Cuckatoo31" nov 2018? Obelisk has just bad management, they could have made better decisions and gamble less. Everybody knows the crypto industry is subject to change and the market.

Like many others I really hoped Obelisk was going a reliable partner in the mining hardware industry after dealing with “ The Wild Wild East” called China. But in the end I am afraid its all the same!!!

Things can always happen but Obelisk has a strange way to go about it. Communication, transparantcy and service to customers it hard to find. You must admit a few things don’t add up leading up to this desicion from a business an integrity perspective.


  • Last pre-order payment was received at the end of April 2019 and Pre sales stopped prior to this. Normally you close a pre-sales because you have hit your $$$ quota for production to start. For some reason it took months to come to the conclusion that GRIN it not viable.

  • The news of GRIN cancellation was released nine days after the following publication: Nebulous raised 3.5 million If you read carefully it gives the impression the Nebulous Team wants focus on SIA COIN and SIA Network and be done with mining.

  • Several clients still don’t have their miners from previous batches Batch 6/Batch 8.

  • BTC paid by Obelisk customers for the GRIN/Other miners are still on the blockchain and the majority seems never to be transferred to USD. Obelisk/Nebulous made a good profit leveraging the BTC of customers and keep as securities for months.

  • Not to mention the several lawsuits that are ongoing against. (one claim of 5 million??) Did this had any affect on the GRIN desicion?

  • I have so many more questions???

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Here is what you get when you try to contact Obelisk:

Thank you for contacting Obelisk! This is an automated response. Be sure to check out the info below and browse our FAQ.

Can I still buy an Obelisk SC1 miner?

Right now we are completely sold out of all SC1 boards and miners. We’ve moved to production on all remaining preordered hardware and do not have any immediate plans to offer additional units for sale.

Be sure to sign up on our website at to begin receiving our announcements and be one of the first to know when we offer the next presale opportunity.

Please note that Obelisk does not have any official resellers or distributors at this time. The only official site where you can purchase an Obelisk is Any other sites using our logo, images, office address, etc. are most likely scams.

When will batch 6-8 orders ship?

Obelisk’s production teams are 100% focused on shipping out all Batch 6-8 orders – including upgrade boards, conversions, and new units – over the coming weeks. We expect to be making daily shipments.

If you are currently experiencing difficulty with your Obelisk miner…

Please send in a detailed description of the issue along with the readout from the DIAGNOSTIC tab located on the left hand side of your dashboard. We will do our best to identify the cause and get you up and running as quickly as possible

– Team Obelisk

No mention of the cancellation and if you pre-ordered from another supplier expecting delivery in October for the GRIN 1, and August I thought for the GRIN 1 Mini, why did they wait to inform the public until now? Were they planning to start building them from scratch for an August delivery date?

All of the top producing Obelisks have been removed from Now who knows how long people who bought from the “Trusted Vendors” listed in Will there be a court battle? Does Obelisk have the money? I’ll be they declare bankruptcy.

Something seems fishy for sure…


UncleWiggly, bad management and bad business. The team are running 3 businesses. They have no infrastructure to pursue their visions for crypto. Its a shame I really liked their vision but it lacks execution.

Pending how they resolve there will be consequences. Not sure if and how they will recover and what effect it will have on SIA COIN.

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it’s a shame ,but it would’ve been great if…

I think @tromp should talk about this in a meeting. Possibly the ecosystem meeting or the next governance meeting.

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It sounds like you knew the GRN1 wasn’t going ahead as early as May( when you didn’t’ tape-out). So why wait until the end of July to make the announcement?


I will explain what I think happened and why there is no fear of StrongU encountering anything like the abrupt halting of supplies like Obelisk. If they did, the source of 'the attack would have become too obvious. --Yes, I said attack.

Although what I have to say would qualify as mere speculation, please refrain from calling me a fool until you have solid proof that what I say is rubbish.

Until Obelisk came along with the Obelisk ‘GRN1 immersion’ and the ‘GRN 1’, no one nor their mothers could have ever imagined that a piece of machinery, pricey though it may have been, could supply such fabulous monetary returns as those miners. Everyone pretended not to be shocked at such an idea, but secretly they were salivating like wolves at the anticipation of such a quantity of generated wealth at such a very low cost of electricity that they felt like common thieves.

But of course, word got around eventually until the central banker’s son brought one GRN 1 home and showed his father. His father immediately outraged at the son for showing him that fiat money would become worthless far faster than he had once feared, he then pretended to throw it in the garbage, but later took it in secret to show his central banker friends. They, of course, had the same reaction. “This is an outrage!” cried the board! “Who will sweep the streets and pick up our garbage?” they cried. So they called a meeting of who else but the BIGGER central bankers who they all had made a lifetime of worshiping. Something had to be done!

“Then went the jury out whose names were Mr. Blindman, Mr. No-good, Mr. Malice, Mr. Love-lust, Mr. Live-loose, Mr. Heady, Mr. High-mind, Mr. Enmity, Mr. Liar, Mr. Cruelty, Mr. Hate-light, Mr. Implacable, who everyone gave in his private verdict against him [Mr. Obelisk] among themselves, and afterwards unanimously concluded to bring [Mr. Obelisk] in guilty before the judge.

And first among themselves, Mr. Blindman, the foreman, said, I see clearly that this [company Obelisk] is a heretic. Then said Mr. No-good, Away with such a fellow from the earth! Ay, said Mr. Malice, for I hate the very look of him. Then said Mr. Love-lust, I could never endure him. Nor I, said Mr. Live-loose; for he would be always condemning my way. Hang him, hang him, said Mr. Heady."

Paraphrasing from George Eliot’s 1871 novel, “Middlemarch”

And of course they didn’t ‘Hang’ Mr. Obelisk, they merely gave them a sum of cash that may have exceeded the maximum profit Obelisk would have made with the sale and distribution of their miners, and Obelisk, like all good obedient companies, bowing to their superiors took the cash and sent out the cancellation notices.

The difference between Obelisk and StrongU is that the output of the StrongU machines would have been barely tolerable, but tolerable just the same.

What thinks you, fellow thieves?


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I read your comment and what I am talking about, Jefferson put succinctly. “I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies.” –Thomas Jefferson

Central banks provoked and funded both sides of WWI & WWII. All government are ruled by central banks often called “the shadow government”.

They have their fingers in absolutely all aspects of life, and the mainstream media and education has covered this up for decades. Maybe start with this: The BRITISH BLACK CHAMBER Revealed.

But if you disagree, I’m not really interested in going back and forth on this. Anyway, Thanks
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話にならない、what does WWI & WWII has to do with anything

Your question exposes the failure of our education system. You, me, all of us were ‘brought up corporate’. Read John Taylor Gatto’s “Dumbing Us Down”. Look up “The Tavistock Institute” by Daniel Estulin. Watch on YT, “All Wars are Banker’s Wars”. We were taught that unresolved conflict is just a part of life and that politics and civic engagement are boring and a waste of time. --Good Luck! :neutral_face:

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still not related to “coin mining”, but could be useful in debates , 1991,2019 全く、別、but were you saying they were bribed to puting it down. stop using illustrations, be clear of your statement. we were talking about GRN1 Cancellation, and you are bringing up WWII.

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Evidently I have failed to satisfy you.
–You have my complete and heartfelt apology… :neutral_face:

I completely agree, but this Obelisk cancellation seemed to come completely out of left field. And why in the hell did they wait so long? I gave my opinion, someone asked me a question and I answered. So don’t have a cow about it.

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Obelisk cancellation seemed to come completely out of left field

No, it didn’t. It was a logical conclusion. There is no Joe Rogan conspiracy going on here.

Obelisk proposed to sell an equivalent of $25mil USD worth of GRN1s( Which were single-chip ASICs solely for C31) this meant they could capture no more than 10-12 million Grins before they become obsolete and C32 was fully scaled in.

At the time when they needed to tape-out the price of Grin was around $2, so they would have potentially been producing $25mil worth of hardware( at retail cost) to capture only $20-22 million worth of Grin. This is before even taking into consideration that Innosilicon’s G32s will also capture a significant amount of those 10-12 million Grin’s remaining on C31. So in reality, ( from a potential buyers perspective) Obelisk was looking to produce $25mil worth of hardware to capture perhaps no more than $4-6 million worth of Grin. No wonder they were struggling for sales…

Innosilicon’s dual-chip G32 is not only competitive vs Obelisk’s GRN1 at C31, but it also offers C32 compatibility( So it’s not constricted to only mine the blocks remaining on C31). When the new phase-out proposal passed, which put all later phase-outs past C31on hold( preserving C32), it created even more value for buying Innosilicon’s C32 Vs Oblisk’s GRN1.

So to summarize, there was no global conspiracy. There just wasn’t any value/ and there was too much risk in purchasing a GRN1 based on Obelisk’s proposed production numbers & knowing that Innosilicon were producing a miner that was also compatible with C32 (This is before you even start to exam Obelisk’s previous track record). So Obelisk naturally struggled for sales to the point where the logical option was to pull the pin.

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so you were typing to satisfy the audience¿, you saw what Neo posted❓(that is a helpful and clear contribution). WWII

could’nt they just copy what innosilicon is doing¿,
like the other mining companies copy themselves.
then with this, innosilicon is the only enterprise making miners for GRIN, no competition.

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